Most of the adventures of 2009 are in this blog so if you feel inclined take a look back through the archives and you can see all the details. In short, I ran and ran and ran then I stopped ate biscuits, mashed tatties and washed it all down with flat Coke then ran more. Sometimes, shortly afterwards, I'd throw it all up again but mostly I didn't. Which was nice.
My favourite times were all had on the West Highland Way, in training and in racing. The chippy run in April was special, running from Milngavie to Fort William and back in four days (missing out a teenie bit, so unfinished business...) eating all sorts of high carb junk food, er sorry local delicacies on the way. Then the race itself, well I don't need to say anymore, simply my finest 16 and a half hours of running and events afterwards make the memories even more special.
Nothing else really mattered after June. I lost a bit of hunger after that but thats just natural, and I struggled a bit with recovery but I've learnt a lot from that. A lot of people have asked me how I did that WHW, to be honest there wasn't any one thing, more a combination of things, for me it's lots of racing and lots of training miles, I don't believe there's any other way to run long races than to put in the miles in training. That's just me though, and therein lies the key, I found what works for me. It is more complicated than that, I do realise, but that's what keeps this sport alive for me, the constant quest for answers, pushing the mind and body harder in training to try and run down the answers to the next big race.
I've two main races planned: West Highland Way and UTMB. I'll be doing loads more though but they'll be part of the training for the biggies, a few ultras slotted in and some hill races too. Everything is going to be off road too, since I've scrapped the plan to do the Athens 24 hour, my heart just wasn't in it. I'll be doing a big challenge run possibly February/March all going to plan but I've not sorted much in the way of detail yet so I'm not telling, apart from it's a long 'un!
So, the plans are laid, I've been doing lots of running over the Christmas period, mostly in the ever-deepening snow which resulted in me coming home and eating a whole orange in a oner one night (er, yes, a chocolate one...). It's been great training, making a 12 mile run a complete epic of staggering through knee high snow drifts which is brilliant fun and a fantastic work out. I just need to start building the miles up now and getting a few races under my belt.
Thanks for all your support in 2009 and Happy New Year!